Meatless Monday: The Best of the Ballard Farmer’s Markets

WARNING: This market is not meatless. There are meat, seafood and poultry stands, but I am choosing to showcase the fun items the vegetarian/vegans and meat lovers can enjoy.
You all know I’m a sucker for a free sample and there’s stinginess or shortage of them here. All the vendors want you try their products and are all very knowledgable on them.
Ballard Farmer’s Market
Sundays 10 AM – 3 PM
Street Parking (get there early or take a bus, it’s brutal!)
5300 Ballard Ave NW
Seattle, WA 98107
I already miss you Seattle. I miss the drizzle, I miss the overcast skies but most of all I miss your Winter produce. The Winter veggies are the best in Seattle (broccoli, kale, spinach, lettuce, squash) and it’s so sad when February kills it. So of course when I decided to showcase all the vegetables, they had died down quite a bit. This market has so many other vegetarian/vegan friendly eats though.
Soda Jerk
I was a fanatic of Dry’s Lavender soda for while, but now that I’ve had Soda Jerk, I’m converted. Soda Jerk’s Lemon Lavender soda has a much better flavor than Dry’s. It’s has the perfect amount of sweet and sour from the lemon and the lavender isn’t overwhelming or medicinal. The Elderflower is almost like a soda version of St. Germain and the Apple Ginger was also fantastic.
They have soda dispenser’s at their stand and you can also purchase a growler of them. The gentleman running the stand told me they mix up their flavors (they’re seasonal flavors), so if you go there it may be different. The sodas are also all natural, organic and local ingredients. Soda Jerk is a must try and will added to our “Best of” list (nudge nudge Tiffany). I am sad I can’t pick up a bottle at Whole Foods now that I’m in Venice. Woe is the life of a Soda Jerk lover.
Firefly Kimchi by Firefly Kitchens
Kimchi is a Korean style fermented cabbage that is often used as a topping and sometimes cooked in with food. I love to add it on hot dogs and spread it on crackers the most. Firefly Kitchen is a Seattle based fermented jarred foods business. Unlike a lot of pickled and persevered products you see in the stores, Firefly uses natural fermenting, which is better for you since it preserves natural enzymes and good-for-you bacteria. Natural fermenting doesn’t cook the food either so if you’re on a raw food diet you can use this as a topping.  Firefly Kimchi is considered Firefly Kitchen’s “go to” topping, it’s the perfect blend of spicy, garlicy and the cabbage holds it’s uncooked texture very well.
Jonboy Caramels
Jonboy Caramels make a great gift with their unique flavor pairings and party-ready packaging. The Fluer de Sel is an ultimate mash-up of sweet, buttery and salty flavors. My favorite Jonboy Caramel is the Absinthe with Black Salt. Not only do they use the local Pacifique Absinthe from Woodenville, WA, but also has a fennel and anise flavor to it. Jonboy is like a more sophisticated version of those wrapper caramels I got at the Sweet Factory in the mall growing up.
West Seattle Farmer’s Market Love: If you’re at the West Seattle Farmer’s Market during the Winter, you must try the Kale varieties at Five Acre Farms. Their Kale grows a lot bigger and with fuller leaves than the ones you find in the supermarket. Their Broccoli stems are so large and tasty you can snack on them raw or dip them in hummus. Their website is here ( and until next Winter she is just selling her organic Chicken Eggs, but email her for market scheduling.
I leave you with pretty Tulips…


Actress and Founder of Girls on Food: I was born and raised in the suburbs of Sacramento, California. I grew up a typical “McDonald’s kid”. I was very picky about what I ate and refused to try new foods. No fun, I know. My Mom started taking me on trips to Europe when I was a teenager and that’s when my palate for finer foods began to develop. Some of my most memorable favorite meals include Veal Bolognese in Rome, Gyros in Athens, Paella in Lisbon and Duck L’Orange in Paris. While this helped me grow out of a fast food phase, I still eat out quite a bit. I know I should be at home cooking, but I love dining out. I started working in restaurants in various front of the house positions at age 15. Since my start, I’ve worked in every casual restaurant setting you can think of: a teriyaki stand, brewery, sushi nightclub, trendy Mexican, family-style Italian, American diner, pizza parlor and even a BLT themed food truck. I can't help but notice that many of the LA food bloggers don't have any sort of background working in a restaurant. A lot of my perspective on food and dining out comes from my years of experience in the biz. Since starting this blog, I have shot appearances on a couple of cooking competition shows as a taster (including MasterChef Junior and another upcoming show). We have also started producing a Youtube Channel. IMDb page here: For this site I contribute content from all over Los Angeles (and the world) to showcase my favorite fine-dining spots, steakhouses, exclusive supper clubs, Hollywood nightlife and our very own #GOFx events, which I plan and coordinate.